Culinary endangerment

The budget, First Bloke’s failed marriage proposal, and now more bad news. Gavin Atkins reports that Ouyen is giving up its love affair with vanilla slices and abandoning its annual Vanilla Slice Triumph.

Vanilla slices can be found in most old-fashioned style bakeries around Australia, and range from rubbery custard concoctions with passionfruit icing, through to the delicate creamy variations more faithful to the original French recipes. Either way, they are always delicious.

For some reason, vanilla slices seem to have a particular place in the hearts (and, presumably, the arteries) of Victorians in a similar way that South Australians love their cornish pasties. For example, this brilliant Victorian blog offers this assessment of one particular specimen:

The Beechworth Bakery Vanilla Slice is lusciously shabby. It was a hot sticky day when we met and the vanilla icing oozed like a nightclub romeo, but it was sweet and soft and clung tenderly to the pastry like a love-sick puppy. The flaky, perfectly cooked pastry was just the right thickness to support the creamy custard and the two hit the tongue like a smooth love song – deep, rich and tasty. A breeze to eat with the hands, it left us licking our fingers seductively. Like a stolen moment of passion we began planning the next rendezvous like an illicit secret.

But can the legacy and the future of vanilla slices really be entrusted to just any old other town? Could vanilla slices be slipping towards the kind of culinary endangerment now faced by foods like chiko rolls and banana fritters?

For the love of custard and passionfruit icing– why has Ouyen forsaken us?

Source: The ShadowLands


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